Email volume increased 5.4% in the fourth quarter of 2012 vs. the same period a year earlier, though volume levels varied dramatically by industry, according to the Experian Marketing Services 2012 Q4 email benchmark report, which also found that email open rates were on average highest on Saturdays and Sundays. 

Below, additional findings from Experian Marketing Services email study, based on campaigns conducted in the fourth quarter of 2012.

The travel industry recorded the largest increase in email volume during the quarter: Two-thirds of travel brands increased mailings, driving email volume up 21.4% YOY. (The category had a similarly large increase in the previous quarter.) Publishers (up 14.3%) and consumer products and services brands (10.4%) also recorded double-digit gains in email volume in 4Q12.

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Lenna Garibian is a MarketingProfs research writer and a marketing consultant in the tech industry, where she develops engaging content that builds thought leadership and revenue opportunities for clients. She's held marketing and research positions at eRPortal Software, GAP Inc., Stanford University, and the IMF. Reach Lenna via Twitter @LennaAnahid and LinkedIn.